Ep 119: What makes Florida Beef special?

When you think of Florida, you probably think of beaches and Disney World. And honestly, you wouldn’t be wrong. But, believe it or not, Florida is actually huge in the beef industry. In fact, the largest beef cattle ranch is located here in the sunshine state! Today, to learn more about beef and its role in Florida, I chat with Gene Lollis from Florida Cattle Ranchers. Gene and I chat about the history of Florida beef and major breeds throughout the state, why land conservation and sustainability is so important in ranching (and how ranchers have been at the forefront of conservation for decades), and how the rise in direct to consumer beef products is improving the relationship between producers and consumers.

Check them out at the links below:

Florida Cattle Ranchers Website

Florida Cattle Ranchers on Instagram

Florida Cattle Ranchers on Facebook

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Show Notes

  • Gene Lollis (Law-less)
  • Florida Cattle Ranchers – Sharing the story of Florida Beef 
  • History of Beef in Florida
  • Desert Ranch – One of the largest beef cattle ranchers in the United States
  • How COVID impacted beef processing
  • How does beef play into sustainability?
  • Land conservation in Florida.
  • Misinformation in beef and it’s impact on the environment
  • The biggest struggles wit beef ranching

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Call to Action

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Ep 116: Water Quality Month

Listen to Cacee and I’s first interview here!

This month is National Water Quality Month with Farm Bureau. The program is designed to showcase the important steps farmers and ranchers are taking at both saving water and improving water quality. Here in Florida, Cacee Hilliard with Florida Farm Bureau’s This Farm CARES program will be highlighting farmers throughout the state that are doing their part in environmental conservation. In today’s interview, Cacee tells us about some Florida farmers using new and old technologies and how the goal for this program is to educate consumers and other farmers on current practices.

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Show Notes

  • Cacee Hilliard with Florida Farm Bureau
  • This Farm CARES Program
  • National Water Quality Month
  • How do farmers save water in Florida? A state with very sandy soil that doesn’t allow for a lot of water retention.
  • Farmers and ranchers are part of the solution with good water quality
  • Latest innovations and technologies
  • Tree T-Pee from Shark Tank
  • Water Wars

Call to Action

Want to stay up to date on the show, consider following our newsletter.  As a thank you for signing up, you’ll receive a FREE guide on 5 simple steps you can do to support farmers.  Sign Up HERE!

Ep 115: Farming without the bank?

Mary Jo Irmen is the woman behind Farming Without the Bank. In our interview today, Mary Jo and I chat about how she developed this strategy, why farmers have to buy the farm generation after generation, and how financing don’t have to be super complicated!

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Show Notes

  • Mary’s background
  • How do farmers make the bank plan B
  • How do farmers leave a legacy so we are not buying it with each generational change
  • Why farmers need to think of themselves as a banker and they need to be bank owners
  • The “Infinite Banking” concept 
  • Why it’s not bad for farmers of any size to be told no from the bank
  • Why farmers having control of their money is a HUGE factor in when to sell or hold
  • Mary’s Podcast: Farming without the Bank

Call to Action

Want to stay up to date on the show, consider following our newsletter.  As a thank you for signing up, you’ll receive a FREE guide on 5 simple steps you can do to support farmers.  Sign Up HERE!

Ep 114: Can Gene Editing make food healthier?

My guest today is Dr. Haven Baker from Pairwise. Pairwise is a growing food tech company working to create a healthier world through better fruits and vegetables. Uniquely, they are working to address barriers to consumption – think things like flavor, texture, and shelf life – to that will make healthier eating easier and more accessible. Today, only 10% of Americans eat the recommended daily allowance of fruits and vegetables, according to the CDC.

In our interview, Dr. Baker and I chat about how Pairwise is using gene editing to create healthier and tastier foods, the “snackification” of fruits and vegetables, and the advantages of gene editing over plant breeding.

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Show Notes

  • Dr. Baker’s Background
  • Background of Pairwise
  • Creating leafy greens, berries, and cherries
  • Working with Bayer
  • Working genetics
  • Gene editing and GMOs?
  • Advantages of gene editing vs plant breeding
  • Plant DNA
  • CRISPR technology
  • How this can improve diets.
  • The convivence of food.
  • “Snackification” of fruits and veggies.
  • Why we don’t see commercials for commodity crops.
  • Pairwise closed a $90M Series B funding round earlier this year, and now has more than 100 employees (in only three years.)
  • Addressing barriers to consumption – think things like flavor, texture, and shelf life – to that will make healthier eating easier and more accessible.

Quotes

  • “Today, only 10% of Americans eat the recommended daily allowance of fruits and vegetables, according to the CDC.”

Call to Action

Want to stay up to date on the show, consider following our newsletter.  As a thank you for signing up, you’ll receive a FREE guide on 5 simple steps you can do to support farmers.  Sign Up HERE!

Ep 113: What are Microgreens?

Microgreens are always super fascinating to me. Little, yet delicious greens that can be added to almost any dish. My good friend (and past guest on the show) Paul Hoff, introduced me to our guests today because he absolutely LOVES their microgreens! Daniel and Jordan Miranda are the minds behind Legacy Greens. Based out of Tallahassee, Daniel and Jordan grow several varieties of microgreens for customers all around North Florida. In our interview today, we chat about their backgrounds with sales and hemp, how they are able to grow year round in a very controlled environment, and much more!

And even enjoy a fun guest intro from my ol pal, Ben!

Check them out at the links below!

Legacy Greens Website

Legacy Greens Instagram

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Show Notes

  • Daniel and Jordan’s backgrounds
  • What are microgreens
  • Differences between microgreens, shoots, wheatgrass
  • Meeting demands of customers
  • Covid’s effect on business
  • Products: Broccoli, Kale, Purple Radish, etc.
  • Can almost any plant have a microgreen?
  • Creating Grow Kits for customers
  • Working at farmers markets

Call to Action

Want to stay up to date on the show, consider following our newsletter.  As a thank you for signing up, you’ll receive a FREE guide on 5 simple steps you can do to support farmers.  Sign Up HERE!

Ep 98: TeleSense and Starting a Company in Silicon Valley

My guest today has started not 1, not 2, not even 3 or 4, but 5 companies in Silicon Valley. One of which was responsible for creating the fingerprint scanner on iPhones! Today, Naeem Zafar and I will be chatting about his most recent company, TeleSense and how they plan to revolutionize grain management. Naeem and I talk about his experiences starting a few companies in Silicon Valley, how to know when is the right time to sell a company versus keep it growing, why he ventured into developing technology for the agriculture industry, and even his thoughts on 3D printed foods.

Naeem’s Bio

Naeem Zafar is a 7x entrepreneur and 5x CEO, with multiple successful exits. He currently serves as the Co-founder and CEO of TeleSense, an IoT company creating real-time wireless sensing and predictive analytics solutions for the stored grain industry. He is deeply ingrained in the Silicon Valley ecosystem and frequently speaks about innovation and entrepreneurship. Naeem has authored five books on entrepreneurship and he teaches entrepreneurship at UC Berkeley and Northeastern University. He has a graduate degree in electrical engineering from the University of Minnesota. More about him at http://www.NaeemZafar.com.

Check out TeleSense at the links below

TeleSense.com

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Show Notes:

  • How to grow a start-up
  • TeleSense Background
  • Process of grain management
  • What data can be gathered from grain
  • How technology/AI has changed grain storage
  • How might this effect consumers?
  • How does this play into sustainability?
  • Experiences working in both US and European markets
  • Thoughts on 3d printed food

Call to Action:

Want to stay up to date on the show, consider following our newsletter.  As a thank you for signing up, you’ll receive a FREE guide on 5 simple steps you can do to support farmers.  Sign Up HERE!

Ep 97: Marianna Creamery

In this episode, we are chatting with Dale Eade, a dairy farmer and creamery owner in Marianna, FL. Dale will explain how the family got into dairy farming, what it’s been like opening and running a creamery, and the benefits of interacting with consumers daily.

This was a fun interview! I’ve heard nothing but great things about Southern Craft Creamery from friends and family that have gone there. Can’t wait to try it out myself. Always fun to chat with farmers from North Florida!

Check out Southern Craft Creamery at the links below:

https://www.southerncraftcreamery.com/

https://www.instagram.com/southerncraftcreamery/

https://www.facebook.com/SouthernCraftCreamery/

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Show Notes:

  • Dale’s background
  • Southern Craft Creamery Background
  • Struggles of starting out
  • North Florida agriculture
  • Processes of making ice cream
  • Dairy production
  • Meeting consumers face to face
  • Hurricane Michael’s impact
  • Farmer/Consumer relationship
  • Future plans

Call to Action:

Want to stay up to date on the show, consider following our newsletter.  As a thank you for signing up, you’ll receive a FREE guide on 5 simple steps you can do to support farmers.  Sign Up HERE!

Ep. 91: Boyd Farms Fresh

We are continuing this unintentional streak of meat companies by interviewing one a bit closer to home here in the Florida Panhandle. Boyd Fresh Farms is a 7th generation farm that specializes in beef cattle. Recently, the Boyd family has transitioned to selling direct to consumers here around North Florida. For those familiar with the Boyd name, you might remember Alan Boyd, the former State and US congressman is owner and operator. He, along with his wife Jeannie, daughter Suzanne, son David, and David’s fiancé Kelly, are continuing the tradition of this family farm will transitioning it into a key sector of the food supply chain.

Straight to consumer business are booming now in the age of the pandemic, and with we have seen just how frail the food supply chain is. Now, more farmers and ranchers are doing the work of processing and distribution to keep their food closer to home and costs down for themselves as well as the consumer. This change in supply is huge and has the potential to change the industry as we know it.

This week, I sit down with Alan and Suzanne and talk about the history of Boyd Farms Fresh, transitioning the business to selling direct, and if Alan prefers working with cattle of politicians. This was a super fun interview and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did recording it.

Check out Boyd Farms at the links below

Boyd Farms Fresh Website

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Show Notes:

  • Boyd Farms History
  • Suzanne and Alan’s backgrounds
  • Types of Beef Cattle
  • Inspiration being consumer direct business
  • COVID-19’s impact
  • Bottleneck of U.S. livestock processing
  • Farmer/consumer relationship

Call to Action:

Want to stay up to date on the show, consider following our newsletter.  As a thank you for signing up, you’ll receive a FREE guide on 5 simple steps you can do to support farmers.  Sign Up HERE!

Podcast Episode 81: What makes Southern Cuisine so Unique?

Today’s episode is a bit different.  Usually we focus on farmers, ranchers, entrepreneurs, and well…you know the deal.  But today, we are talking about food.  Specifically, the unique qualities of Southern Cuisine.  I might be a little biased having lived in the south my whole life, but Southern food is absolutely amazing.  Catfish, greens, fried green tomatoes, cornbread, oysters, and a loooooot more.  But the Southern food scene is much more diverse than you might think.  Our guest today is Stephanie Burt of the podcast, The Southern Fork.   Stephanie is a food and beverage writer and podcaster that highlights the outstanding chefs, farmers, restaurateurs, bakers, and others revolutionizing the food scene here in the south.  This episode was a ton of fun as Stephanie and I geek out about Southern Food, podcasting, and some North Florida landmarks.  Be sure to check out Stephanie’s podcast!

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Don’t forget to check out Stephanie and the Southern Fork at the links below: 

Southern Fork Website

Southern Fork on Instagram

The Southern Fork Podcast on iTunes

Show Notes:

  • Stephanie Burt’s background
  • Start of Southern Fork Podcast
  • What makes Southern cuisine so unique?
  • Stephanie’s favorite and most annoying food trends
  • Lesser known Southern delicacies
  • Chefs growing crops for their restaurants
  • COVID-19’s impact on local restaurants
  • Netflix’s Chefs Table
  • Interviewing Food Network’s  Maneet Chauhan from Chopped
  • The popularity of Apalachicola Bay Oysters
  • Weird Bloody Mary’s
  • Geeking out over podcasts and trying to develop the perfect interview
  • Being in the present during interviews
  • Best food spots in North West Florida
  • Thoughts on the farmer/consumer relationship

Call to Action:

Want to stay up to date on the show, consider following our newsletter.  As a thank you for signing up, you’ll receive a FREE guide on 5 simple steps you can do to support farmers.  Sign Up HERE!

Podcast Episode 62: Florida’s Berry Best Berries

 

Nick W

The berry best berries?!  Get it?!  Dad joke for the win.

Florida is home to the winter strawberry capital of the world, Plant City!  Which is also home to our guest today.  Nick is from Wish Farms which grows all the berries you know and love, strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and much more!  In our interview today, Nick will cover the background of Wish Farms, their production techniques, how they work with partner growers in California and Florida, as well as why they have both organic and conventional production techniques.

 

https://open.spotify.com/episode/0QS6noGobTqCRCUw6WEq42

Listen to the episode on the apps below:

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Check out Wish Farms at the links below:

Wish Farms Website

Facebook Page

Instagram

Show Notes:

  • History of Wish Farms.
  • Growing process of berries.
  • Plant City, winter Strawberry Captial of the World.
  • Working with partner growers.
  • Florida and California berries.
  • Why do berries mold so quickly?
  • Growing Organic and Conventional.
  • How organic production differs from conventional.
  • Covid-19s impact.
  • Floirida’s $12 billion dollar fruit and vegetable industry.
  • Do organic crops use pesticides?
  • Are organic and conventional crops just as healthy?
  • Thoughts on the farmer consumer relationship.

 

What I learned from this episode:

  • After doing some research, I didn’t know that Florida’s fruit and vegetable industry is over $12 billion dollars.  That’s a lotta green.

 

Call to Action:

I hope you are enjoying these interviews as well as learning a thing or two about food production and the agriculture industry.  If you think a friend or family member might enjoy the podcast, consider sharing it with them!  Simply sharing the website, http://www.thefarmtraveler.com, or telling them to search “Farm Traveler” on their favorite podcasting app, are great ways they can listen and stay up to date on episodes.